How to Become a Nebraska Notary
The Nebraska Notary Process:
Are you interested in becoming a Nebraska notary? Are you interested in generating extra income, starting your own Nebraska notary business, adding a notary title to your resume, or helping people in your community? The State of Nebraska appoints notaries to serve the public as unbiased impartial witnesses to document signing. Becoming a notary in Nebraska is a straightforward process, and as long as you meet the eligibility requirements listed below, you can apply to become a Nebraska notary. The American Association of Notaries has been helping individuals become notaries since 1994.
This guide will help you understand:
- Who can become a Nebraska notary
- The process to become a Nebraska notary
- Basic Nebraska notary duties
Qualifications to become a notary in Nebraska:
To become a notary in Nebraska, a notary applicant must meet all of the following requirements:
- Be at least 19 years old
- Be a resident of State of Nebraska or a person who resides in a state that borders Nebraska if such person is employed in or has a regular place of work or business in Nebraska
- Not have been convicted of a felony or crime involving fraud or dishonesty within the previous five years
The process to become a notary in Nebraska:
In order to become a Nebraska notary and receive a Nebraska notary public commission, a notary applicant must:
- Meet the eligibility requirements provided in the previous section
- Request a test from the Nebraska Secretary of State’s Office
- Pass a written take-home test to obtain a notary public commission
- Submit the following items upon passing the test: (1) Initial Application for Nebraska Notary Commission; (2) $15,000 Nebraska notary bond; (3) U.S. Citizenship Attestation Form; (4) $30 commission fee (payable to: Nebraska Secretary of State); and (5) Evidence of Employment in Nebraska Form (non-residents only)
Can a non-resident become a notary in Nebraska?
Yes. A non-resident can become a Nebraska notary public if the person (1) meets the qualifications as a Nebraska resident; (2) maintains a residence in Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, or Wyoming; and (3) maintains a regular place of work or business in Nebraska. Non-resident applicants must submit the Evidence of Employment Form with their initial notary application. If a non-resident notary public is terminated from his or her regular place of work or business in Nebraska, the notary must relinquish his or her notary commission by returning the commission certificate and notary seal to the Secretary of State.
Is a Nebraska notary bond required to become a notary in Nebraska?
Yes. A Nebraska notary bond in the amount of $15,000 is required for new and renewing notaries public.
Do I need a Nebraska notary errors & omission insurance?
Optional. Errors and omission insurance is designed to protect notaries public from liability against unintentional notarial mistakes or omissions that result in financial damages to the public or a document signer. The American Association of Notaries encourages Nebraska notaries to purchase an errors and omissions insurance policy for their protection against liability.
How much does it cost to become a notary in Nebraska?
To become a notary public in Nebraska, an applicant must include the $30 commission fee when submitting his or her application for appointment or reappointment, plus the cost of the required notary stamp, bond, and the recommended journal.
How long is the term of a notary public commission in Nebraska?
The term of office of a Nebraska notary public is four years commencing with the date specified in the commission. However, a notary’s commission may be rendered void: (1) by resignation, (2) by death, (3) by revocation, or (4) when the notary public ceases to reside in Nebraska.
Where can I perform notarial acts in Nebraska?
A Nebraska notary has statewide jurisdiction and may perform notarial acts in any county at any location in Nebraska. Likewise, a Nebraska notary public may not perform notarial acts outside this state.
Who appoints Nebraska notaries public?
The Secretary of State appoints Nebraska notaries public.
Contact information for the Nebraska Secretary of State follows:
Nebraska Secretary of State
Business Services Division
State Capitol, Room 1301
1445 K Street
PO Box 95104
Lincoln, NE 68509-5104
How do I renew my Nebraska notary commission?
A Nebraska notary public may file a renewal application with the Secretary of State within thirty days prior to the commission expiration date, obtain a new Nebraska surety bond, and pay a $30 commission fee. Notaries who fail to renew prior to their commission expiration dates are required to take the take-home exam again. To renew a notary commission, visit the Secretary of State website at http://www.sos.ne.gov/business/notary/.
Are there any exams or notary course requirements?
Yes. All notary applicants are required to pass a written take-home test available and administered through the Secretary of State consisting of laws, procedures, and ethics relating to the office of notary public. If the applicant fails to pass the first two tests, the applicant must wait six months before requesting the third and final exam. The passing exam score can be used to apply for a notary commission within two years.
Do I need to purchase a notary stamp in Nebraska?
Yes. Nebraska law requires all notaries public to authenticate all official acts with an official inked stamp seal on which the following information shall appear (RSN §64-210):
- The notary’s name as commissioned
- The expiration date of the commission
- The words “State of Nebraska”
- The words “General Notary” or “General Notarial”
Ink color, shape, and dimensions are not specified by Nebraska statute.
Is a notary journal required in Nebraska?
No. Nebraska law does not require a Nebraska notary public to record his or her notarial acts in a journal.However, the Electronic Notary Public Act requires all Nebraska electronic notaries to record every electronic notarization they perform in a journal. The Nebraska Secretary of State and the American Association of Notaries recommend that all Nebraska notaries record their notarial acts in a permanent, paper-bound journal with numbered pages designed to deter fraud as a protective measure against liability. For Nebraska notary supplies, visit our website at www.usnotaries.com or call (800) 721-2663.
How much can a Nebraska notary charge for performing notarial acts?
Nebraska notary fees are set by statute (RSN§33-133). The maximum allowable fees that a Nebraska notary public can charge for notarial acts are listed below:
- Acknowledgments - $5.00
- Administering oaths or affirmations - $2.00
- Each certificate and seal - $5.00
- Affidavits - $2.00
For each mile traveled to perform a notarial act, a notary must use the rate established by the State Department of Administrative Services. A Nebraska notary public may not charge a fee for notarizing an absentee ballot.
What notarial acts can a Nebraska notary public perform?
A Nebraska notary public is authorized to perform six notarial acts:
- Take acknowledgments and proofs
- Administer oaths and affirmations
- Witness or attest a signature
- Take depositions
- Issue summons and command the presence of witnesses for depositions in civil lawsuits (RSN 64-108).
Can I perform electronic notarization in Nebraska
Yes. Nebraska enacted the Electronic Notary Public Act effective July 1, 2017. In addition, the Nebraska Secretary of State adopted and promulgated rules and regulations (Electronic Notaries Public) to implement the Electronic Notary Public Act. Nebraska statute and regulations stipulate that an applicant seeking an electronic notary public commission must: (1) register as an electronic notary public; (2) have a valid Nebraska notary commission; (3) pass a notary course training and examination administered by the Secretary of State; and (4) pay the registration fee. The Secretary of State must approve the electronic notary’s electronic seal and electronic signature,and such must be independently verifiable and unique to the electronic notary public. All Nebraska electronic notaries are required to maintain a journal for every electronic notarial act they performed. First and foremost, the new act mandates that, during the entire electronic notification, the principal of a document must be in front of the electronic notary public physically and be close enough to see, hear, communicate, and give identification credentials without the use of electronic devices such as telephones, computers, video cameras, or facsimile machines.
How do I change my address?
A Nebraska notary whose residence changes during the term of his or her notary’s commission is required to provide a written notice to the Secretary of State no later than45 days after such change by completing the “Notary Public Request to Change Record” form. There is no fee for an address change. To download this form, visit the Secretary of State website at http://www.sos.ne.gov/business/notary/index.html.
How do I change my name on my Nebraska notary commission?
Optional. A Nebraska notary public whose name is legally changed during the term of the notary’s commission may continue to act under his or her original commission until the expiration or termination of such commission. The notary also has the option of changing the name on the commission. This entails filling out a “Notary Public Request to Change Record” form from the Secretary of State, obtain a bond in the new name, and pay the $30 fee. Upon receipt of these items, a new commission with a new expiration date will be issued. The notary must obtain a new seal imprinting the new name. To download this form, visit the Secretary of State website at http://www.sos.ne.gov/business/notary/index.html.
A Nebraska notary public, or his or her representative, is required to send a signed letter to the Secretary of State’s office if the notary: (1) no longer maintains residence in Nebraska during the term of the notary’s commission; (2) no longer maintains employment in Nebraska; (3) no longer has a regular place of work or business in Nebraska; (4) no longer wishes to hold the office of notary public; (5) is deceased; or (6) is duty-bound to resign by court order or the Secretary of State’s revocation process. A notary whose commission has been revoked must return his or her commission and seal to the Secretary of State within fifteen days. The failure to deposit the notary commission and seal with the Secretary of State will subject the notary to a penalty of $1,000 to be recovered in the name of the state. A notary public so removed from office will be forever disqualified from holding the office of notary public.
Prohibited Nebraska notarial acts
The following acts of notarial misconduct provide a basis for disciplinary action:
- Preparing, drafting, selecting, or giving advice concerning legal documents
- Claiming to have powers, qualifications, rights, or privileges that the office of notary public does not provide, including the power to counsel on immigration matters
- Performing acts that constitute the practice of law
- Using the phrase “notario” or “notario publico” to advertise notary services
- Charging more than the fee prescribed by law for notarial services
- Determining the type of notarial act or certificate to be used when a document does not contain one
- Notarizing a document without the signer being present at the time of the notarial act
- Notarizing one’s own signature
- Notarizing a document when the document signer was not identified by satisfactory evidence of identity
- Notarizing a document that contains blanks
- Making a materially false statement on one’s notary public application
- Permitting another person to use one’s official notary seal
- Notarizing for a spouse, ancestor, descendant, or sibling, including in-law, step, or half relatives
- Signing under any other name than the one under which the notary was commissioned
- Affixing one’s notary signature and seal to a document that does not contain an attestation clause
- Using a rubber stamp to affix the notary’s signature when notarizing
- Notarizing signatures for minor children (however, there are exceptions)
- Performing marriage ceremonies
- Notarizing a document if the notary has a financial or beneficial interest in the transaction or is a party to the transaction
- Notarizing a document if the notary public does not understand the acknowledgment or notarial certificate used on the document to be signed or executed
- Administering an oath over the phone or by video conference
- Executing a notarial certificate when the document signer was not in the presence of the notary
- Post-dating or pre-dating documents for notarization.
- Notarizing a document when the document signer did not understand the document
- Notarizing an incomplete document
- Failing to complete a notarial certificate on a notarized document
Official notarial misconduct:
Nebraska notaries public who commit official malfeasance may be subject to criminal liability, civil liability, administrative disciplinary action, or other official measures for any of the following unlawful activities:
007.03B1. These acts of malfeasance will likely result in the total revocation of a notary’s commission: (1) the signer was not in the physical presence of the notary at the time of the notarial act; (2) the signer was not personally known to the notary or identified through satisfactory evidence for the notarization; (3) the notary was engaged in the unauthorized practice of law, which includes using the term “notario publico”; (4) the notary permitted another person to use the notary official seal; or (5) the notary was convicted of a felony or crime involving fraud or dishonesty while commissioned.
007.03D1. These acts of malfeasance will likely result in the temporary revocation of a notary’s commission: (1) notarizing a document in which the notary has a personal interest; (2) making a materially false statement on the application; or (3) failure to maintain the required bond.
007.03E1. These acts of malfeasance will likely result in an official warning to the notary: (1) overlooking changing the county or state of the notarial certificate or (2) notarizing a document with blanks.
433 NAC 6.001.05. “Malfeasance in office occurs when a notary public fails to follow the requirements and procedures for notarial acts provided for in statute under Chapter 64, articles 1 and 2, and this administrative code, or, being convicted of a felony or other crime involving fraud or dishonesty within the last five (5) years.”
RSN 64-105.03. A violation of any of the provisions of this section—including (1) using the phrase “notario” or “notario publico” to advertise notary services and (2) performing acts that constitute the practice of law—shall be considered the unauthorized practice of law and will subject the notary to the penalties provided in section 7-101.
007.03B. Total Revocation means the notary public commission is revoked and cannot ever be reinstated, and the commission and seal must be returned to the Secretary of State.
007.03D. Temporary Revocation means a revocation of the notary public commission for as little as one month or as long as four years, and, during revocation, the commission and seal must be returned to the Secretary of State.
007.03E. An Admonishment will be issued to a Nebraska notary and notated in their paper and electronic file when the Secretary feels that the alleged malfeasance rises to the level of warning but not revocation. However, an official admonishment will not hinder the notary from performing notarial acts.
Nebraska notary laws and regulations:
Revised Statutes of Nebraska Annotated, Chapter 64 (Notaries Public)
Revised Statutes of Nebraska Annotated, Chapter 64, Sections 301-317 (Electronic Notary Public Act)
Nebraska Administrative Code, Title 433, Chapter 6 (Regarding Notaries)
Nebraska Administrative Code, Title 433, Chapter 7 (Electronic Notaries Public)
Nebraska notarial certificates:
Click here to view your state's notarial certificates.
Revised: December 2017
Legal disclaimer: The American Association of Notaries makes no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this page. Information this page is not intended as legal advice. We are not attorneys. We do not pretend to be attorneys. Though we will sometimes provide information regarding federal laws and statutes and the laws and statutes of each state, we have gathered the information from a variety of sources. We do not warrant the information gathered from those sources. It is your responsibility to know the appropriate laws governing your state. Notaries are advised to seek the advice of an attorney in their state if they have legal questions about how to notarize.
Notary bonds and errors and omissions insurance policies provided by this insurance agency, American Association of Notaries, Inc., are underwritten by Western Surety Company, Universal Surety of America, or Surety Bonding Company of America, which are subsidiaries of CNA Surety.